Government of Canada invests $2.6 million to help improve safety of agri-food workers in Nova Scotia
Support of up to $2.6 million through the Emergency Processing Fund has been provided for 40 food processing companies in Nova Scotia. The announcement was made alongside Kentville-based Ocean Crisp Apple Company Inc., one of the largest single suppliers of premium variety apples in Nova Scotia, which is receiving up to $100,000.
With this funding, recipients are adopting measures to help keep employees safe. This includes making adjustments to enable social distancing, purchasing reuseable personal protective equipment (PPE), installing protective barriers and developing employee training.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian food producers and processors have stepped up to deliver quality food for Canadians. From the outset, the Government of Canada has helped food processors invest in safety measures and maintain their capacity to keep up with demand. The Government of Canada will continue working with food processors to protect the health and well-being of workers in food processing plants across Canada and strengthen our food supply chain.
• Announced in May 2020, the $77.5-million Emergency Processing Fund is helping food processors implement measures to protect the health and safety of workers and their families in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with an emphasis on supporting meat processing facilities in Canada. The Fund also supports facility upgrades to help strengthen Canada’s food supply. A further $10 million is expected to be allocated from internal funds.
• Perennia, a provincial development agency, is supporting delivery of the Emergency Processing Fund in Nova Scotia.
• Nova Scotia has more than 2,000 agri-food and beverage production companies with approximately 12,000 jobs linked to the industry.
• Today’s announcement includes $29,000 in funding for Tuckamore Homestead, a Cape Breton bee keeping farm, which was previously announced.
• In 2019, nearly $2.5 million in federal funding was announced for Ocean Crisp Apple Company Inc. to purchase and install advanced apple processing technologies to increase capacity, improve efficiency and reduce water usage.
• Today’s announcement builds on other measures introduced to keep Canada’s agri-workforce strong, including:
o almost $85 million in funding for the Mandatory Isolation Support Program for Temporary Foreign Workers to assist Canadian employers with some of the incremental costs associated with the mandatory 14-day isolation period imposed under the Quarantine Act on temporary foreign workers upon entering Canada; and,
o a $35-million Emergency On-Farm Support Fund to boost protections for domestic and temporary foreign workers and address COVID-19 outbreaks on farms.